People

Overseas Volunteer Activity in Nepal

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●Kim Dam-eun, Department of Tourism Management

Every vacation, KMU students do volunteer work overseas in several Asian countries. Last winter vacation, they went to Nepal, Myanmar, the Philippines, and Cambodia. I interviewed a student who did volunteer work in Nepal.

1. Please introduce yourself.
My name is Kim Dam-eun. My major is tourism management. Last winter vacation, I went to Nepal to participate in KMU’s overseas volunteer program.

2. Did you have special reasons why you wanted to volunteer in Nepal?
I was interested in Nepal because of the big earthquake there in 2015. Moreover, I have a Nepalese friend who told me a lot about Nepal before I went. I heard about the beautiful scenery and the amazing Nepalese culture. That’s why I went to Nepal to do volunteer work.

3. How did you prepare for your overseas volunteer activity?
KMU Students prepared a variety of entertainment programs such as comedies, Korean dance, taekwondo, singing, Korean language education. I taught a traditional Korean game. To prepare for this, I had to learn Nepali, the language of Nepal because Nepalese people’s ability to communicate in English is limited. To learn Nepali, I visited a KMU professor who teaches Nepali and asked for a translation.

4. Please introduce your overseas volunteer activities in Nepal.
I helped make a new playground, draw a mural on a wall of a school, and remodel a school. In addition, I taught children Korean language, taekwondo, and traditional culture. On the last day, I performed a in show about Korean culture. I think I gave them a good impression of Korea.

5. What were the most meaningful things during the volunteer work, and what inspired you to do this activity?
During the volunteer work, we had to move stones and water to build a stone wall. Even though we encouraged ourselves, Nepalese students visited and helped us. They said, “Thank you for making our school beautiful.” Because of that, I felt that people can have a greater impact when they work together. In addition, when we met in the New Year, the people of Nepal invited us to join their party. It was very meaningful, too.

6. Are you going to participate in any other volunteer programs?
Usually, I am a volunteer mentor. After my overseas volunteer experiences, I want to participate in volunteer mentoring programs for students from other countries because a multicultural era has come to Korea.

7. What do you want to say to your school and other students about this experience?
KMU has been conducting overseas volunteer activities since 2002. Students who participated in overseas volunteer work said that this program was helpful. That is because KMU provides a lot of support. Therefore, I hope students will challenge themselves and do overseas volunteer work if they have a chance. It may be hard to prepare volunteer activities, but students can gain invaluable experiences through this program.